May 1, 2009

Broncos to Close Out Season With Sacramento State

May 1, 2009

SANTA CLARA, Calif. -- After posting their first PCSC conference victory of the season over San Diego this past weekend, the Santa Clara softball team looks to close out the 2009 season with a strong final home stand versus conference rival Sacramento State. The Broncos will square off with the Hornets in a four-game weekend series from May 2-3. First pitch is set for noon on both Saturday and Sunday's games at West Valley College Softball Field in Saratoga, Calif.

Prior to Sunday's contest, the SCU softball team will honor the career of graduating senior Noelani Ho'opi'i.

Last Time Out
The Broncos (6-45, 1-15) earned their first conference victory of the season on April 25, versus San Diego. The 3-1 win snapped a month long skid and proved to the rebuilding Santa Clara softball program that they are capable of competing and winning. The all-around team effort saw strong performances on both the offensive and defensive end of things. At the plate, junior transfer Megan Smith led the team, going with a hit and a RBI. On the mound, sophomore pitcher Jenna Fong posted her fourth win of the season. The Sacramento, Calif. native threw her fifth complete game and tallied three strikeouts in 31 batters faced.

SCU went 3-1 versus the Toreros on the weekend. They opened up Saturday's play with a 4-0 loss, and then posted their first PCSC victory in the afternoon to split the day. Closing out the weekend series, they were edged 3-2 in the bottom of the seventh and were shutout for a second time, 6-0 in their final game on Sunday.

Thanks for the Memories!
On Sunday, May 2, prior to their doubleheader versus Sacramento State, the Broncos will honor senior captain Noelani Ho'opi'i's four year career at SCU. Ho'opi'i, the lone senior on the roster, enters the weekend after missing a month of play with a broken finger. Going into this weekend, the Kaneohe, Hawai'i native has tallied 87 hits, 41 runs, 36 RBIs, 14 stolen bases, nine doubles and seven home runs.

The Bronco infielder has been a leader both on-and-off the field for the developing Santa Clara softball team. After walking onto the team in 2006, she has seen action in 157 games throughout her four year career. She is a three-time PCSC Commissioner's Honor Roll recipient and in 2008 she was an All-PCSC Honorable Mention selection.

West Valley College Softball Field
Fans please note the Broncos will call West Valley College Softball Field their home for the 2009 season. For information and directions please go here. There will be a $2 charge for parking and a $5 gate fee for both games of the doubleheader for people 13 and older. Regular admissions will include an official program with entry. Admission for children ages 12 and under will be $2.

Follow the Game
All Santa Clara home games will be available for fans on www.SantaClaraBroncos.com. Fans if you cannot make it to the park to watch your Broncos take the field, you will be able to follow all SCU softball action live on GameTracker.

Scouting Sacramento State
Sacramento State travels to Santa Clara riding a four-game win streak, including a midweek routing of Saint Mary's 13-2. The Hornets (24-23, 10-6 PCSC) are manning second place in the PCSC going into this weekend and are two games behind conference leaders Portland State. The Broncos can prevent SSU from obtaining back-to-back NCAA bids, as the PCSC conference winner will earn an automatic berth into the NCAA Regionals. Sacramento State will also need help from Loyola Marymount, who plays Portland State this weekend, if they look to win the PCSC for the second straight season.

Leading the Hornets this season is Desiree Beltran, who's hitting a .396 clip. In 45 straight starts, she's 55-for-139, with 28 RBIs, 19 runs, 13 doubles, five home runs and one triple. She posts a .612 slugging percentage and a .931 fielding percentage. On the mound, Megan Schaefer leads the four-player Sacramento State pitching rotation. Schaefer's tallied a 2.15 ERA in 26 appearances, and is 14-7 this season. With 17 complete games and four shutouts under her belt, she's thrown 95 strikeouts in 163.0 innings pitched. Schaefer's given up 156 hits, 65 runs and 33 walks this season, as well.